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The Bruce Dawe National Poetry Prize

As an Australian poet, your contribution shapes our culture. None believed this more so than the late Emeritus Professor Bruce Dawe AO, one of Australia’s most acclaimed contemporary poets. Professor Dawe believed that universities should support the study of literature and promote the Arts in Australian society. His passion was turned to action when he chose to sponsor this prominent literary prize. 

The Bruce Dawe National Poetry Prize is offered each year and applicants can enter the competition by submitting poetry. The 2023 winner of The Bruce Dawe National Poetry Prize will receive $3000, and two highly commended entrants will be awarded $500 each. 

The competition opens on Monday 4 September 2023 and closes on Wednesday 15 November 2023 per the Terms and Conditions

Click here to register and submit poems.


How to Enter

The Bruce Dawe National Poetry Prize is open to Australian citizens and permanent residents.

You are able to submit between one and five poems. A fee of $8.00 is charged for each poem you enter, which contributes to the longevity of the competition.

Your poem(s) must not exceed 50 lines, however, there are no thematic or style constraints.

Please ensure you read the terms and conditions prior to entering.

For further information, please email

All poems are submitted to the judges with no additional information. The judges will not know the name, age, gender or location of the author. All that they will have to judge are the words that you put to paper.
Yes. Please ensure that the poems you wish to enter into the competition are submitted at the same time. Please note that the terms and conditions do not allow for entries to be edited after submission.  
Our definition of publication excludes self-publishing. You are welcome to enter any poem you have written if it has not been published by a third party at the time of submission.
No, let your creativity flow – there is no theme or preferred structure. Everything from free verse to formal styles such as bush poetry, sonnets or haikus are welcome.
No, the terms and conditions do not allow the editing of submitted poems.

If you are a past entrant or have attended other UniSQ events in the past, you may already have an account with us. Select ‘enter now’ on the homepage (it will redirect you), enter your email address on the right under ‘Have you registered with us before?’, then click on the ‘I forgot my password’ link in the lower right-hand corner. This should automatically send you an email to reset your password.

Once you have reset your password, you should be able to login under ‘Have you registered with us before?’ and proceed with your submission. If this doesn’t work, please email with an image of the error message you are receiving, and we will help.

We encourage all entrants to register online, and if they do not have computer access to seek assistance from family and friends. If this is not possible, please contact to arrange an alternative.

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